[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/wcw_7085.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:Where the Big Boys Played 1988-2001]]

->''"Here we are 15 years later and I can honestly say that it was the worst thing that ever happened in the history of wrestling."''
-->-- '''[[Wrestling/TheWrestlingObserverNewsletter Dave Meltzer]]''' [[https://soundcloud.com/thelapsedfan/memorial-tour-wcws-starrcade-2000 on]] WCW going out of business

World Championship Wrestling (originally Jim Crockett Productions) was a {{professional wrestling}} company which, as Wrestling/EricBischoff put it, beat Wrestling/{{WWE}} at their own game for 84 weeks. Naturally, this success didn't come right away.

JCP had big names like Wrestling/RicFlair carrying the company, TV deals and great name recognition in the states. They were trying to compete on a national level. Unfortunately, the company was very careless with money. After a string of financial and creative mishaps, it was sold to Ted Turner in '88 and re-named World Championship Wrestling.

''WCW Saturday Night'' was the mothership show before ''[[Wrestling/WCWMondayNitro Nitro]]''. It was two hours long and had more than a few {{squash match}}es, just like every other show at the time. However, there were times where they'd let a young nobody get a shot at Flair and actually give him a run for his money. It was also quite cheesy, with [[Wrestling/{{Goldust}} Dustin Rhodes]], [[Wrestling/TripleH Hunter Hearst Helmsley]], [[Wrestling/MickFoley Cactus Jack]], and The Hollywood Blonds ([[Wrestling/StoneColdSteveAustin "Stunning" Steve Austin]] and Wrestling/BrianPillman) making their debut.

''Nitro'' was a long-shot idea by Bischoff to compete with ''[[Wrestling/WWERaw Raw]]'' in their own timeslot. He had the perfect blueprint for a three-hour show: Make sure there is variety, showcasing different style of wrestling (often with interesting stipulations). Live TV in an age when viewers had their attention divided. Have a mega-angle going on with the Wrestling/NewWorldOrder, which was original and, to this day, innovative. Pro wrestling was forever changed by the nWo in some ways, with each show ending on a cliffhanger. Think ''Wrestling/WrestleMania'' hype, but weekly.

''Nitro'' was the superior product for years, until it hit a creative wall. Bischoff's problem was that he measured everything by the ratings. So when ''Raw'' rebounded--and everyone knew it would eventually--he had no plan or faith in his own product. Guys like Wrestling/ChrisJericho, Wrestling/DiamondDallasPage, Wrestling/{{Raven}}, and Wrestling/BookerT either [-1)-] didn't get elevated like they should have, or [-2)-] it was handled poorly and came about too late. The Cruiserweight Division went from being "the future of wrestling" (as Bischoff touted them as on his show) to being "vanilla midgets" who "couldn't draw", because he was listening to the wrong people. The dumping of WCW's [[{{Face}} babyfaces]], and most of them forming the [=WolfPac=] (an nWo [[AntiHeroSubstitute offshoot]]). Wrestling/TheFourHorsemen as {{jobber}}s to the stars. Firing Wrestling/SeanWaltman, which gave Wrestling/DGenerationX credibility as something on par with the [=nWo=].

They might have kicked ''Raw''[='=]s ass in the ratings, but WCW couldn't book a pay-per-view to save its life: Wrestling/{{Goldberg}} vs. Wrestling/HulkHogan in the packed Georgia Dome should have been the main event of ''Starrcade'' (or just any PPV main event). Instead, it was relegated to ''Nitro'' because they wanted to win the ratings war so badly.

Even so, their numbers at the end weren't far off from where ''Raw'' is today. (The difference is that WWE is making money, while WCW was losing it by the boatload.) And without WCW going under, we might not have current/former stars like Wrestling/AJStyles or Wrestling/CMPunk, since it was the WCW void which promoted Wrestling/{{TNA}} and Wrestling/RingOfHonor to relevance.

By the time WCW disbanded, it had the following Championships:

* '''WCW World Heavyweight Championship''' - It was defended on WWE programming until it was merged with the WWE Championship to become the Undisputed WWE Championship.
* '''WCW Cruiserweight Championship.''' - It was defended in WWE before its retirement in 2008.
* '''WCW United States Championship''' - It is currently being used in WWE.
* '''WCW World Tag Team Championship''' - Defended on WWE programming, then merged with the WWE (World) Tag Team Titles
* '''WCW Cruiserweight Tag Team Championship''' - After WWE's purchase of WCW, it was one of 2 titles to be abandoned and never mentioned again on WWE programming
* '''WCW Hardcore Championship''' - Much like the Cruiserweight Tag Team titles, after WCW closed, it was also abandoned and never defended on WWE
* WCW also had two '''Women's Championships''', though they were rarely showcased on television and almost exclusively defended outside of the United States, mostly in Japan (just like in the WSL Wrestling/{{A|merican Wrestling Association}}WA) so most viewers just saw Nitro Girls and [=nWo=] Girls, who were mostly there to dance for the crowd during the commercial break.
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!!Tropes associated with WCW:
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: AD]]
* AdvertisedExtra:
** When Wrestling/BretHart jumped ship to WCW, he was still technically under contract with WWF for a while, so they actually couldn't debut him. He also had a 90-day no compete clause, so he couldn't really do anything other than talk, and be a special referee for ''Starrcade 1997''. Bret just airing everyone's dirty laundry out of his real disdain for the WWF and Wrestling/VinceMcMahon at the time could have been a nail in the coffin for the WWF.
** At its height, WCW had over 240 wrestlers on its roster. Unlike most examples, though, only perhaps half of them were ever actually seen on television. This was a deliberate plan on WCW's part: buy up competing talent for the sole purpose of keeping them from signing with the competition. While some were given spots on WCW programming, others (many of them way past their prime) got to lay back and collect paychecks while "working" under a non-compete agreement. Unfortunately for WCW, even this plan got away from them. At the time, wrestlers were paid on a per-show basis, whether or not they actually worked on that show. Attendance was taken by signing your own name in on a clipboard. A fair number of genre savvy workers, knowing full well that WCW didn't have any intention of actually using them, simply stayed at home and had friends of theirs on the roster sign in their names in their place. There were also many who would still travel in a full-time schedule on the company's dime without working any matches. Only in 2000 did they start to only fly out any talent who were actually regularly being booked.
** They had a solid women's roster, with half of them being from GAEA Japan, and they did nothing with it. So {{Wrestling/Madusa}}'s famous dropping-her-belt-in-the-trashcan stunt was all for nothing, it was nothing more than Bischoff giving the finger to Vince again.
* AllThereInTheManual: Whenever you felt a WCW storyline needed some extra flavoring, the official magazine had your back. It sounds like Nick Patrick's life was ''[[http://i.imgur.com/DjWqgr5.png miserable]]'' before the [=nWo=] showed up and offered him a hand.
* AntiClimacticUnmasking:
** 1990's Black Scorpion. Said to be an associate of Wrestling/{{Sting}} from his past, he kept getting attacked before he could remove his mask. Ole Anderson, who voiced the Scorpion and came up with the initial concept, suffered a career-ending injury before his unmasking could occur. This forced a rewrite, and Ric Flair took his place for the unmasking. Many elements from the angle, such as setting the ring on fire, multiple Black Scorpions etc. were integrated into Sting during his ''Crow'' years.
** 1993's Shockmaster. After weeks of build-up, Sting stood before a live audience at ''Clash of the Champions'' and announced the arrival of his new partner. The wall came crashing down, and out waddled a man who lost grip on his helmet, revealing... Fred Ottman (better known as the Popeye-themed wrestler Tugboat). He was wearing an Imperial Stormtrooper helmet, dipped in glitter, which makes no wonder why he botched the entrance. Since that fateful day, the Shockmaster has kept a [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B_m5nm0vdbQ low profile.]]
** In 1999, WCW forced ReyMysterioJr Wrestling/ReyMysterioJr to lose his mask in a bad match to end a feud. In lucha libre tradition, losing a mask is something which happens very rarely and it is a BIG deal, typically a culmination of a very long-running and bitter feud. And, once unmasked, the luchador is never supposed to wrestle masked again unless he wins the right to do so, typically by beating the guy stole the mask. It also didn't help that Rey's masks were the most popular selling mask in the WCW shop and that without it, Rey looked like he was about 13 years old. Luckily, Rey was able to convince Mexican wrestling authorities of his opposition to the match.
* AntiClimax: They built up the Wrestling/UltimateWarrior as a threat to Hogan. Warrior pretty much got beaten all the time, even though Hogan was supposed to be super-scared of him. After ruining Warrior v. Hogan and Sting v. Hogan, the only thing keeping WCW afloat was Wrestling/{{Goldberg}}'s run in '98. But they managed to botch the end of that, too.
* ArtifactTitle:
** '''TBS purchase''': The name "[x] Championship Wrestling" was used by various shows affiliated with the NWA, starting with a Georgia promotion (Georgia Championship Wrestling). Jim Crockett purchased it from the WWF and folded Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling into it. Then Jim Barnett, who had worked for a "World Championship Wrestling" in Australia of all places, came to Atlanta during a power struggle over the Georgia territory. Barnett later became majority owner, and started using the name "Word Championship Wrestling" for their new TV show. This new entity was under the ownership of cable pioneer Ted Turner. Very shortly afterward, the decision was made to use the familiar WCW branding. All the TBS purchase did was make WCW the legal name of the company.
** '''WWE purchase''': The WCW belt only appeared once on WWE programming. The reason? Vince didn't actually 'buy' WCW; he bought the video library, logos, names, pretty much anything that had to do with WCW other than the actual company. Along with those purchases came a few ironclad contracts (such as Wrestling/KevinNash's and Hulk Hogan's) that were signed under Time Warner's name. They needed to revive the company in some way to pay out the contracts that were still left over, which is why WCW was renamed to UCW (Universal Wrestling Corporation). This is one of the reasons why the [=InVasion=] angle kind of fell flat: WWF couldn't get all the superstars, just a few of them. The others were stuck in legal limbo. Another thing that was left over were lawsuits. Most notably was [[Wrestling/SidEudy Eudy]] vs. UCW, which was [[http://caselaw.findlaw.com/ga-court-of-appeals/1204668.html filed]] against AOL-Time Warner after Sid broke his leg (it's on video) and his contract was terminated. Problem was, he was signed to a three-year contract in 1991, which was terminated in 2001...the same year Vince bought WCW.
* AscendedExtra:
** Diamond Dallas Page would travel quite the road to go from a manager who was a non-wrestler to world champion and becoming the ultimate face of WCW.
** In the Fall of 2000, a dark time in WCW history, former tag team specialists Wrestling/BookerT and Wrestling/ScottSteiner were holding the company afloat.
* BShow: ''Thunder'', ''Worldwide'', and ''Saturday Night.'' The latter was originally WCW's flagship program before ''Nitro'' launched. It was actually a decent B-show: They featured a lot of good midcarders like [[Wrestling/WilliamRegal Steven Regal]] and tag teams like Harlem Heat, and a lot of the newer and younger talents. However, ''Nitro'' still referenced ''Saturday Night'' frequently. Storylines, debuts and even title changes did occur on that show. They also had a lot of appearances by future stars of the industry. (All of the WCW videos with Triple H are from ''Saturday Night.'') Even the nWo would also show up and have matches there now and again. If not for Saturdays at 6:05 Eastern/5:05 Central, there would never have been any WCW. It's worth nothing that ''WCW Worldwide'' '96 had a bunch of matches between future WWE Hall of Famers.
* BeachEpisode: ''Bash at the Beach'' was a pay-per-view with a beach theme. Heck, it took place at an actual beach once!
* BittersweetEnding:
** If it wasn't by the fact that it was the company's last show, ''Nitro'''s last episode, ''The Night of Champions'', would've looked like the moment where things were back to where it should be for WCW: Booker T won the world title, and the show capped with a sparring match between Flair and Sting, two WCW oldies who had stuck with the promotion to the bitter end. Post-match, Sting and Flair embraced and shook hands; a genuine babyface ending.
** Ironically, the man who unified the WCW and WWF titles was Chris Jericho, the first major acquisition by Wrestling/VinceMcMahon. He defeated both [[Wrestling/DwayneJohnson The Rock]] and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin in the same nightin back-to-back matches, no less!to unify the two titles.
* {{Bowdlerise}}: {{Wrestling/Vader}}'s infamous "give me some color." This particular match against Cactus Jack got them both in trouble. Mick asked Vader pre-match make him bleed a bit for dramatic effect. When Mick called the spot in the turnbuckle, Vader drove the bottom of his fist down onto Mick's nose, shattering it and causing him to bleed profusely. Since WCW were strictly anti-blood at the time, the match had to be edited out of the show when it broadcast. He doesn't explain that in the DVD (''Mick Foley's Greatest Hits and Misses''), so it just looks like Vader dickishly broke his nose. It says something that Mick let Vader powerbomb him on the floor twice, but those punches are still among the worst ever seen in wrestling.
* CaptainErsatz:
** Sable's first husband, Marc Mero aka "Johnny B. Badd". If you're not familiar with Johnny B. Badd, here's what you need to know: WCW gave a former boxer with almost no wrestling training a Music/LittleRichard gimmick (yes, they named a wrestler with a Little Richard gimmick after a Music/ChuckBerry song) and put him over everybody for five years. His finish was a punch. A Little Richard who could beat you by punching you once. Also, he had a confetti gun.
** Glacier for [[VideoGame/MortalKombat Sub-Zero]]. Mortis also seemed to be a combination of Reptile and Scorpion, and Wrath's entrance attire was somewhat Shao Khan-inspired.
** Dustin Rhodes briefly experimented with Seven, a [[Franchise/{{Hellraiser}} Pinhead]] lookalike.
** Christi Wolf as [[Wrestling/{{Chyna}} "Asya".]]
** "Kwee Wee", real name Allan Funk. You can read about him [[http://www.wrestlecrap.com/inductions/induction-wcwdotcom/ here:]] His gimmick is that he's a rogue fashion designer. He appears to be based on Chris Kattan's character from ''Saturday Night Live''.
** Arachnaman was such a blatant ComicBook/SpiderMan ripoff that Marvel Comics threatened legal action, and the character was quickly abandoned.
** Goldberg was reminiscent of a bulkier "Stone Cold" Steve Austin (especially with the black trunks and bald head) before his ring character became a rampaging force of nature with an ever-increasing win streak.
** Wrestling/MikeAwesome doing his [[Series/That70sShow "That 70s Guy"]] gimmick.
** Tony's banter was a VERY weak attempt at Wrestling/GorillaMonsoon.
** Like AAA, they had a "Thundercage", which was a send up to the ''Film/MadMaxBeyondThunderdome.''
* CardboardBoxes: There were always plenty of them backstage for someone to be knocked into. Clangy poles were also featured, which served no other purpose than to be knocked down and make noise (at least the boxes could be justified as emptied of equipment used during the show).
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: The Four Horsemen, Wrestling/LexLuger and the nWo were all subject to this. Especially when it involved Sting.
* ContinuityReboot: In 2000, Time Warner started taking a more active role in booking. They vacated all of WCW's titles on the April 10, 2000 episode of ''Nitro'' as part of a "reboot", then split the company into two factions: the "New Blood" (up-and-comers) and the "Millionaires' Club" (the veterans). Unfortunately, this was perceived as a rehash of the nWo vs. WCW feud, and many fans never got it.
* {{Corpsing}}:
** ''Halloween Havoc'' '97: Diamond Dallas Page vs. Wrestling/RandySavage. DDP smashes Savage over the head with a glass plate, and Wrestling/DustyRhodes, doing color commentary, can't stop laughing.
** Aside from the botch itself, the Shockmaster segment is one of the best pieces of unintentional comedy ever created. Wrestling/DaveyBoySmith and Sid Vicious have their backs to the hard camera while the others cut the promo (which consists of insane shouting), but they leave the mic on so you hear them ripping on Fred as soon as he falls. It's made hilarious due to the off-camera comments of Ric Flair ("I told you...oh God..."), Stevie Ray ("Who is this motherfucker?"), and best of all, Davey Boy Smith ("He fell on his arse! He fell flat on his fucking arse!") Ole Anderson, who provided the voice of the Shockmaster, snickered into the mic before composing himself.
** When "The Cat" (Ernest Miller) fought The Dog (Al Green), even Wrestling/TonySchiavone couldn't keep from laughing.
* CoversAlwaysLie:
** The VHS release of ''Slamboree'' 2000 sports a big picture of Wrestling/JeffJarrett and DDP. Creator/DavidArquette is not pictured or even mentioned on either side of the box.
** ''New Blood Rising''. Best thing about the title: The New Blood stable broke up before the PPV.
* CuckoolanderCommentator:
** There's a reason ''Website/{{Botchamania}}'' has a dedicated segment called "Insane Dusty Commentary".
** Mark Madden as the heel announcer. "Fatty-boom-batty", indeed.
** Wrestling/JimCornette and Steiner running down Hulk Hogan instead of calling the match.
--->'''Scott Steiner:''' Hulk Hogan worrying about his "spot". Well, he can ''have'' his spot! His bald spot! His limp-gimp-to-the ring spot! His age spot!
** WCW signed an exclusive contract with Michael Buffer to be their lead in-ring announcer. He made $100k per appearance just to call guys' names, and even then, he'd occasionally get them [[{{Spoonerism}} wrong]]. "Bret 'The Hitman' Clarke," "...home of the NCAA Champions of the Universe!"
** Steve "Mongo" [=McMichael=], an ex-NFL star. He would bring his [[MisterMuffykins chihuahua]] to the announcer's table and dress him up in funny outfits. Steve wasn't so cuckoo, though: Even he asked at one point ask why they were putting Luger v. Savage on free TV instead of PPV.
** In late 2000, ''Thunder'' was the beneficiary of Stevie Ray calling people a "Fruit Booty".
--->'''''Literature/TheDeathOfWCW''''': Later, he would call Scott Steiner both "synthetic" (seemingly an accusation of steroid use) and also a "sad, sack-ass fruit booty" (seemingly an accusation of...well, we have no idea).
* DarkerAndEdgier:
** The New World Order became a famous case of this, as it forced the competition to follow their lead. Gone were the colorful characters Hogan, Nash and Hall played in WWF; now they were akin to a biker gang running roughshod over WCW. Sting was facing the same crossroad that Hulk Hogan did years earlier; the only problem was that Sting was the face of WCW, so a [[FaceHeelTurn heel turn]] for him was out of the question. Instead, they started a different angle in which the paranoia surrounding the nWo broke Sting's spirit, and provided a reason to take him off TV for bit. They also took inspiration from ''Film/TheCrow'' movie and had Sting emulate that. The black & white theme was a tease, because some thought Sting was slowly turning heeland WCW did tease his defection. However, Sting essentially became "chaotic good", and sold a ton of merch.
** They completely redesigned the set and the [[http://i.imgur.com/9fdlM.png company logo]] in April '99. WCW never advertised or gave any indication that they were re-branding at all, just BLAM! ''Nitro'' changed after that. The tone of the show became grey and industrial, far from the bright colors of the Crockett era, and the volcanic eruptions of the Bischoff era, yet very distinct from the grungy WWF presentation. (But for some reason, Hulk Hogan was back in the red and yellow).
** Replacing the ropes on the ring with cables was cool as hell, albeit stupid on their part. Ask Mick Foley's ear how cool they were.
* ADayInTheLimelight: ¡ÓRALE! ¡ÓRALE! ¡ARRIBA LA RAZA! Adding luchadores and cruiserweights was very refreshing. Wrestling/LaParka, Psicosis, Jericho, Juventud Guerrera, Wrestling/DeanMalenko, Wrestlng/EddieGuerrero, and Rey were the cream of a very deep and talented pool of guys.
* DenserAndWackier: Russo wasn't the only foot on WCW's throat in the end, what with the million-dollar contracts being given out like candy. But lest we forget all the pole matches, fifteen title changes in 6 months (nearly thirty in 2000), trying to revive the [=nWo=] with Jeff Jarrett and ''Bret Hart'' of all people, the complete annihilation of {{kayfabe}}, the famous three-way with Nash, Steiner and Goldberg (see below), and Judy Bagwell on a forklift. Russo started behind the 8-ball sure, but he also pocketed it with a bit of English.
* DramaticallyMissingThePoint: Booking PPV-quality matches almost every week, usually in the last hour or so, to keep people from switching to ''Raw''. So you end up getting Hogan v. Goldberg on ''Nitro'' for free, missing that the whole point about [=PPVs=] was putting good quality matches that were worth money. There were flaws in this plan.
## With so many popular match-ups crowding the schedule, there wasn't much room for the cruiserweights to compete for attention. Rey Mysterio, Juventud Guerrera, and Wrestling/BillyKidman traded the CW belt back and forth, while Wrestling/ChrisBenoit and Chris Jericho jumped to the WWF; the rest languished in the midcard.
## Tony was a good announcer, but even he was too big a fan of hyperbole, so everything that happened was the greatest thing ever, every week. Bringing Buffer in to do ''Nitro'' further illustrated the problem they had in that era: WCW wasn't just trotting him out for big [=PPVs=] or title matches; he was doing the intros for simple tag matches week-in and week-out. The guy dressed in a tuxedo for audiences who threw trash in the ring after each main event. This is because ''Nitro'' was not run by wrestling people, but TV people (including Bischoff). To them, ratings were king. But Vince knew that although ''Raw'' lagged in the ratings, they always had a strong foundation and steady income in pay-per-view. WCW did not. None of their PPV earnings went to WCW, they went to Turner Broadcasting. On top of that, WWE's "live one week, taped the next" policy kept their costs down. Compare that with WCW's "everyone gets pyro, and some get monster truck entrances" policy.
## WCW was bursting with title changes every week. DDP once regained the World Title from Sting on the same night he lost the World Title to Sting. Not only did it make ''Nitro'' impossible to follow, it removed any sense of stature from the belts and made the WWF Championship seem more vaunted in comparison. This ensured that WCW would always be seen as a copy of WWF, rather than the future of wrestling.
* DreamTeam: With Turner's money, Bischoff could basically match any offer Vince made and even exceed it. Within a year he'd assembled the greatest roster in the annals of professional wrestling. Big names like Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Lex Luger, Kevin Nash, Wrestling/ScottHall, Wrestling/TedDiBiase, Dusty Rhodes, "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan, Bret Hart, Wrestling/RoddyPiper, Dustin Rhodes, Wrestling/MikeRotunda, Wrestling/TheNastyBoys, "Mean Gene" Okerlund, Madusa, Vader and others made news with their defection to WCW. Only Wrestling/TheUndertaker, Wrestling/ShawnMichaels, Triple H, Kane, Wrestling/MarkHenry, and a few others remained loyal. However, it came with its downside; the fact that some of these contracts, particularly those used to lure away WWF talent, were so exorbitant is often cited as an important reason for why WCW was eventually sold to [=McMahon=] for a paltry $2.5 million. It backfired in another way, though. WCW dedicated so much time to its big stars that WWF assembled their own team out of people who had been buried and/or ignored by WCW.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: EM]]
* EvilForeigner: Wrestling/LanceStorm was one of the most hated and cowardly heels in the company. His rulebook was a contributing factor: "Please rise for the Canadian National Anthem", holding the [[AC:S]]askatchewan [[AC:H]]ardcore [[AC:I]]nternational [[AC:T]]itle, no foreign objects to be used in hardcore matches, converting the US Title into a Canadian one, re-naming the Cruiserweight Title the "100kg and Under Championship", etc. And then there was his "Canadian Rules" match vs. Mike Awesome. (It's common knowledge in Canadian wrestling that you need to pin your opponent for a 5 count, then give them a 10 count to answer the bell!)
* {{Fingerpoke of Doom}}: 1998 saw other decisions that accelerated the decline: At ''Starrcade '98'', Nash defeated Goldberg after Goldberg was tazed by Scott Hall to claim the World Heavyweight Championship, which also ended his undefeated "streak." Eight days later on ''Nitro'', Nash and Hogan were scheduled to have a match for said title, but instead, Nash took a poke to the chest from Hogan and sold it like he'd been shot with a cannon, lying down on the mat. This incident came to be known as the Fingerpoke of Doom. Prior to the main event, Tony Schiavone (per Bischoff's orders) revealed that fan-favorite Mick "Mankind" Foley would be winning the WWF Championship on a pre-taped edition of ''Raw'', essentially inviting over half a million viewers to change the channel which they did.
-->'''Tony Schiavone:''' That's gonna put some butts in the seats, heh!
* GarbageWrestler:
** [[Wrestling/JimFullington The Sandman]] had a brief run in the Hardcore Division, as did David Flair. The Hardcore matches were a "love-it-or-hate-it" affair. Probably because no one backstage gave a damn, so the talent did what they wanted (kind of like the cruiserweights). Like when Norman Smiley coming out dressed as an Ice Hockey goalie, or when Wrestling/TerryFunk got kicked by an actual horse in Boise, Idaho. And he [[NoSell no-sold]] it. Just another day for Terry Funk.
--->'''Terry Funk:''' YOU FUCKING HORSE! I'LL KICK YOUR ASS!
** Blacktop Bully vs. Dustin Rhodes inside of an actual, moving truck. They bladed, as well, and this got both wrestlers fired.
** ''Bash at the Beach '99'': The Junkyard Invitational, which had a bunch of luchadores (La Parka in street clothes!) getting suplexed and doing flips off of cars. It was such a clusterfuck, almost everyone ended up with some sort of injury.
** Brian Knobbs teamed with someone called "The Dog" (a guy who actually behaved like a dog, wore a leash, and chewed on wrestling gear) as the Hardcore Soldiers, who were actually managed by Fit Finlay. The Dog was played by Al Green: he was one half of the Master Blasters with Kevin Nash, and was once involved in a worked shoot with Tank Abbott.
* TheGiant: [[Wrestling/TheBigShow The Giant]] (of course), Goldberg, and... Ice Train. The only cool thing about Ice Train was his [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SVMI0OXC0w theme.]]
* GimmickMatches:
** [=WarGames=]. Two rings placed side-by-side and enclosed in a cage, with wrestlers battling inside, outside, and over the cage. You can't win or get disqualified until everyone is inside the cage, and then it's suddenly a one-fall match. It's a festival of brutality, and it was a recipe for success in the early years. (The one bad thing about it was the explanation of the rules, which took about 5 minutes.) The ''Elimination Chamber'' was designed by WWE as a {{spiritual successor}}, but nothing beats the original, to the point that Triple H finally brought the Match Beyond back for NXT in 2017.
** The ''Uncensored'' pay-per-view was built on these. The entire concept of these [=PPVs=] was that they would be "unsanctioned" shows where matches that couldn't be on any other show would take place. One of them was the Doomsday Cage. The idea is to climb through each cage to get to the belt at the top. It was a really cool visual to have steel cages stacked on top of each other, but 3 cages may have been one too many.
** Nothing says WCW like an "on-a-pole" matches. They were to the 90s what scaffold matches were to the 80s. So many poles.
** David Flair proposed to [[Wrestling/StacyKeibler Miss Hancock]] after she announced she was pregnant. Which led to the Wedding Dress match (really a bra and panties match) between him, Miss Hancock, and that goth chick Wrestling/{{Daffney|Unger}}. The kicker was when Crowbar hits the ring, discovers that everyone is lying on the mat (selling their injuries) in their underwear and then smiles and decides to remove his own pants.
* HeelFaceRevolvingDoor:
** Bret Hart for his entire WCW career; it's one of the reasons why he couldn't get over as well as he did in the WWF.
** Lex Luger, 1998-99.
** Ric Flair, non-stop.
** Hogan turned face for good in 1999 (with Sting briefly turning heel) and the Outsiders reformed... but Bischoff was reinstated in 2000 and brought with him a new heel stable, of which Hogan was a member. Hogan was not happy about it, as he'd already gone back to his Hulkamania gimmick.
** Everybody had this problem in the Vince Russo era. Not a surprise, as Russo has infamously said he doesn't believe in "{{heel}}s" or "{{face}}s".
* IntercontinuityCrossover:
** Regarding its "farm leagues", such as the Heartland Wrestling Association, which one could say remained as a remnant of WCW after it went under.
** WCW in 1994 had produced the AAA ''When Worlds Collide'' PPV, which helped introduce lucha to US audiences, and in late 1995/early 96, while planning the launch of their cruiserweight division, and needed talent to fill it. Wrestling/{{Konnan}} was big in Mexico, popular enough to get away with being called "The Mexican Hulk Hogan". But the real reason WCW originally signed him is that he was tight with other Mexican wrestlers. They even pulled talent from Wrestlng/NewJapanProWrestling due to Bischoff's relationship with Sonny Onoo, but a majority of the division was made up of luchadors.
** Vince [=McMahon=] used to, and kind of still does, struggle with the idea of putting his belt on someone who was a champion in another promotion. The biggest guys are homegrown, and big time free agents are often miscast in WWE: Flair, Dusty, Booker T, Wrestling/{{Tazz}}, DDP, the list goes on and on. Bishoff, on the other hand, pretty much built ''Nitro'' on the backs of WWF World Champions. Luger jumped over first, Hogan became the champ, the [=nWo=] came after that, and then Wrestling/{{ECW}} talent came over. Bischoff did not have a suspicious nature like Vince, and though it came back to bite him in the end, it helped WCW quite a bit. Their fortunes didn't really pick up until Hall and Nash defected to WCW and formed their own coalition: the Outsiders, who teased at a cross-promotional "invasion" (despite the WWF having nothing to do with the angle). People in the south hated Hall and Nash. The trash thrown at them was real, they were genuinely seen as invaders.
** WCW was eventually sold to the WWE in early 2001 (weeks before ''[=WrestleMania=] X-Seven'') at what amounted to fire-sale prices, mere days before the final ''Monday Nitro''. What was supposed to be a battle between WCW[=/=]ECW and the WWF ended up being a battle between the [=McMahons=]: The final show was a simulcast on ''Raw'', with an appearance by Vince's son Wrestling/{{Shane|McMahon}} on ''Nitro''. WCW stuck around InNameOnly, the kayfabe reasoning behind this was that Shane and Wrestling/{{Stephanie|McMahon}} were the owners of WCW and ECW respectively, but still had some pull in the Federation, which is why they let these guys run roughshod over the WWF guys every week, as the titles were unified with their WWF counterparts, culminating with the unification of the WCW and WWF Championships at ''Vengeance 2001'' (the WWF Undisputed Championship). With both WCW and ECW (which had gone out of business just a couple of months prior) in their back pockets, WWE was left as the lone major professional wrestling promotion in the United States.
* InvisiblePresident: Men such as Jim Herd, Eric Bischoff, J.J. Dillon, and Vince Russo served as the de facto leaders and movers of WCW, but they all depended on Turner, and could be overruled by him. Jericho once tried to go over Dillon's head to get a shot at the Cruiserweight belt, and Turner would have done it too, based on Jericho's sound logic. But Chris was "such a crybaby" that Turner wrote back that he'd sided with his subordinate instead.
* {{Jobber}}:
** ''Saturday Night'' is remembered for the sheer volume of jobbers on display. Sgt. Craig "Pitbull" Pittman, the State Patrol, "Hardwork" Bobby Walker, Dean Malenko, Barry Darsow doing his golfer gimmick, Fidel Sierra, Mean Mike and Tough Tom, the masked Texas Hangmen, and the grandaddy of them all The Gambler. (He was actually a good worker who never really got a chance. ''Website/{{WrestleCrap}}'' published a whole feature on him.) They put on a show, even if it wasn't about them. That's because WCW was always generous to its workers. Many of those guys are still wrestling today.
** The nWo "B-Team" with Horace Hogan, [[Wrestling/{{Virgil}} Vincent]], and a few other jobbers of the squad. If someone from the nWo lost regularly, chances are it'd be one of them.
** Goldberg was 174-0, and half of those matches were against poor Bill [=DeMott=] who was speared into hell.
** The Horsemen by the end. Arn Anderson's merch sells were so bad, he had to pay WCW $1. The balance sheet actually says he made "-$1". That's the same as Mongo [=McMichael's=].
* LargeHamAnnouncer:
** '''DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVE PENZERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR'''
** Tony Schiavone, the greatest commentator in the history of our sport! A lot of smarks never liked Schiavone, but he definitely had one great call: "THE YETAAAAAAAYYYY"
* LicensedGame: More than you might expect.
** UsefulNotes/NintendoEntertainmentSystem: ''WCW Wrestling'', which was based on the Japanese Super Star Pro Wrestling.
** UsefulNotes/GameBoy: ''WCW The Main Event.''
** UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem: ''WCW [=SuperBrawl=] Wrestling.''
** UsefulNotes/PlayStation: ''WCW vs. the World'', which features several Ersatz versions of [[Wrestling/NewJapanProWrestling New Japan]] wrestlers, and its sequel ''WCW vs. [=nWo=]: World Tour''. Both Japanese-developed and distributed by Creator/{{THQ}}.
** UsefulNotes/Nintendo64: ''[=WCW/nWo=] Revenge'' (THQ again).
** Multi-platform: ''Nitro'' (THQ), ''Mayhem'', and ''Backstage Assault'' (Creator/ElectronicArts). THQ also released ''Thunder'', which ran on the same engine as ''Nitro'', but it was only ported to [=PSOne=].
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: We're talking about a promotion that, at its height, had over 240 wrestlers on its roster.
* LostInTranslation: Vampiro was printing money back in the day; we're talking Hogan-levels of fame in Mexico. He was doing movies, music, everything. His promos in Spanish were incredible, but it didn't transfer. His in-ring work ethic did. Vampiro didn't hit the big-time until he joined ''Wrestling/LuchaUnderground'', since then the guy has been the most over than any other time in his career.
* {{Mascot}}: Wild Cat Willie! ("W.C.W." - get it?)
* TheMovie: ''Film/ReadyToRumble'', as much as fans would rather not acknowledge this.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: NR]]
* OutOfFocus:
** The Cruiserweight Division gradually lost airtime to the old established stars. "THOSE CRUISERWEIGHTS CAN CRUISER-WAIT, BROTHER." That's not a joke, Hulk Hogan actually said that.
** Sting hated Hogan and the Wolfpac was formed with the sole purpose of ruining Hogan's day. As soon as the nWo reconciled, Sting split.
** After Goldberg lost the world title and his streak to Kevin Nash, who in turn dropped the world title to Hogan, he actually never bothered to get his revenge. He just let Hogan take his title and feud with Flair, while he fought Wrestling/BamBamBigelow for no apparent reason.
** Flair absolutely was buried when Bischoff took over WCW, to the point where Flair successfully sued TNT for defamation. He had previously helped install Bischoff as Vice-President and scouted Hulk Hogan (and later Randy Savage) on behalf of WCW, and what was his reward? [-a)-] Receiving a tenth of the pay Hogan did, [-b)-] Jobbing to both Hogan and Savage multiple times, and c) Being publicly disparaged about his age, drinking problem, or finances--especially since it wasn't building to any storyline. Flair was massively underpaid, as well. (Even less when you consider he was buying sea breezes for everyone every night.) He was also the biggest ratings draw WCW ever had, if Meltzer is to be believed.
* PartsUnknown:
** Various members of the Wrestling/DungeonOfDoom including "The Taskmaster" Wrestling/KevinSullivan, from "The Iron Gates of Fate" and The Zodiac (Wrestling/BrutusBeefcake), from "The Land of Yin and Yang".
** Masked wrestler Blitzkrieg, who had a brief run in 1999, from "The Cosmos".
** The Patriots (Firebreaker Chip and Todd Champion), from "WCW Special Forces".
** The Yellow Dog (Wrestling/BrianPillman under a mask), from "The Kennel Club".
* PowerStable: The Four Horsemen (the Ur-Example), New World Order (and its various spinoffs), and the New Blood.
* ProducePelting: ''Nitro'' crowds seemed to love throwing concessions at the wrestlers and into the ring. It seemed like the end of every ''Nitro'' had the nWo standing ankle deep in trash that fans threw into the ring at them because of some rottenness. (Go watch ''Bash at the Beach '96'' when Hogan joined the [=nWo=].) It was even lampshaded by Hogan:
-->'''Hogan:''' As far as I'm concerned, all of this crap in the ring represents these fans out here!!!
* PutOnABus:
** Sting found God in August of 1998. He reveals in his movie ''Sting: Moment of Truth'' that he confessed all of his sins (drugs, womanizing, etc.) to his wife. Bret Hart "injured" him at ''Halloween Havoc'' '98 as an excuse to write him off TV. He was given time off to deal with "personal issues" at home. Other than a few house show appearances in early '99, he didn't make his return until April of that year.
** On Thanksgiving night 1998, Hogan announced his retirement on ''The Tonight Show''. In reality, Hogan and Bischoff came to the conclusion that he had been overexposed to the point of being ineffective. Ultimate Warrior was an earlier attempt to give Hogan a burst of life. But when the ''Halloween Havoc'' buyrate flopped, and ''Nitro'' continued to lose to Raw in the ratings (despite his repeated appearances) he left just soon enough that they could find his replacement: in this case, Kevin Nash. Hogan was in-and-out in '99 mostly due to injury and no creative direction.
** Pillman was supposed to go work for ECW for a few months and get his "Loose Cannon" gimmick down to a science. Eric Bischoff expected to resign him. He did not consider the possibility that Pillman might want to go work with his best friends in the business (Austin, Dustin, Foley, and the Harts) in the WWF, the former three having left WCW because they hated the direction in which it was going in, not unlike Pillman himself.
* PutOnABusToHell:
** Scott Hall was arrested a number of times for drunk driving. It got so bad that his wife Dana wrote in to the office and pleaded with them do something, and something they did: WCW Creative made it part of his gimmick. Eric Bischoff did indeed come downstairs to talk man-to-man with Hall in a promo, mind you to which Hall replied by vomiting on him. He then disappeared from WCW programming. Later, after Flair went bananas, he was carted off to a mental hospital...where he bumped into Hall.
** The first ''Nitro'' of 2000 took place in Charlotte, North Carolina. A new WCW Comissioner was to be announced. The plan was originally to have Flair as the new Commissioner; unfortunately he was still in legal dispute and buried in the desert, so instead they announced Terry Funk. (Like most Charlotte episodes, Ric was booked to get beaten up in his hometown. Instead, Funk took the beating.)
** Near the end, we got the Miss Hancock pregnancy angle. David Flair went on the warpath, challenging any wrestler he suspected of fathering the baby. According to rumor, Vince Russo had booked himself as the father. This would have been followed by David's father announcing that Hancock was the product of an affair he had some 20 years before, which would've made her and his son David half-siblings. The story was abandoned when Hancock turned out to have faked the whole thing. She became Shawn Stasiak's valet for a brief feud with Bam Bam Bigelow, then vanished right before the promotion died.
* RatingsStunt:
** In the promotion's early years as WCW, it was terribly mismanaged and written by people who had no idea what fans wanted to see, relying on stunts and gimmicks to capture the glamour of the WWF: such events included a live appearance by Film/{{RoboCop}} (at a pay-per-view, no less), and the infamous Black Scorpion mystery.
** Hogan selling an arm bar from Jay Leno. At least Dennis Rodman or Karl Malone made an ounce of sense since they were giant, professional athletes!
** [[Film/ChildsPlay Chucky]] cutting a promo on Rick Steiner and making him look like a jabroni.
** WCW had Mark Martin driving their car for NASCAR.
** WCW tried to capitalize on Mancow, a national radio DJ, and his popularity by having him "feud" with Wrestling/JimmyHart. Hogan and Hart did a spot on his radio show where Hart attacked Mancow, and this is what we get. What's interesting is at the end of this match it's pretty clear that Mancow doesn't know the finish and Jimmy has to [[https://gfycat.com/WatchfulRewardingCuscus physically hold him on top of himself.]] Mancow had worked a short program in ECW the previous summer so this is technically another occurrence of WCW poaching talent from ECW.
** Vampiro had musical guests like Music/InsaneClownPosse and Music/TheMisfits to back him up. WCW also paid Music/{{Kiss}} one million dollars to play two songs, and as part of the agreement WCW had to make a KISS-themed wrestler, and that wrestler had to headline at least one PPV.
** The final straw for many fans was the crowning of actor David Arquette as World Champion. It had less to do with Arquette himself (though he was a star at the time) and more to do with his wife, Courteney Cox, who was one of the highest-paid women on TV. There is also the video packages they did with David after he won the title. There was one where Courteney is shouting at him, trying to beat (or shout) some sense into him, telling him to give up the title, and Creator/KurtRussell randomly walks by. David explains him that he's a pro wrestling champ, and Kurt just laughs at him.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: SZ]]
* SceneryPorn:
** The first hour of every ''Nitro'' was spent on the freakin' pyro display. WCW even set off pyro in the middle of matches. (Chris Jericho's pyro [[http://i.imgur.com/wkItg8k.gif failed to impress.]])
** ''Halloween Havoc'' with the giant pumpkin, ''Bash at the Beach'' with the beach setting, ''Road Wild'' at the motorcycle rally and so on. Even the announcers would be dressed up in appropriate attire to go with the themes. Especially when some of the props could be used to beat people up with. Audiences may never again see somebody beat a man with a rubber shark. In ''Spring Stampede'', Macho Man hit someone with a wooden wagon wheel.
* SexSells: Kevin Nash and Scott Hall vs. ... Porn Stars! Brought to you by the Russo-Ferrara Laugh Factory.
-->'''''[=WrestleCrap=]'':''' The woman in question was the adult film actress Minka, owner of the world's second-largest pair of breast implants (WCW couldn't be #1 in anything at this point).
* SlidingScaleOfRealisticVersusFantastic:
** Usually the commentary desk is about plugs and selling products. Between Michael Buffer, Tony Schiavone, Bobby Heenan, Mike Tenay, and Gene Okerlund they set a great tone for the importance of 'our great sport.' Buffer is known for his pomp and circumstance regal announcing. You had Tony selling the drama and wrestlers, Heenan with the history of the business (and jokes), Tenay with stats and data, and Mene Gene with his 'breaking news' interview style. They made the matches seem more real than they were. All in all, before the abortion of 1999-2001, it can be said that WCW did a good job of making the matches feel like competitive contests. (By then WWE had shied away from describing their show as a sport for a long time.) Their style also had a dose of 'reality' to it: rather than a variety show with wrestling. It was about presenting it as a sports competition, and the company promoting itself as prestigious. A place where wrestlers from all over the world fight to prove their worth, hence the international flavor.
** The ring itself was smaller than the one WWF used, with a nice "sssssspring" sound which made the moves seem more devastating. This is something Steve Austin always brings up: due to the fact that it was smaller, the wrestlers looked bigger. For some reason, WWE has always insisted on using a ring twice the size of every other promotion.
* SpinOff: Spring/summer 1989 was kind of a weird time where TBS made it a point to substitute "WCW" for "NWA" whenever possible, title belts excluded. By mid-'89, all the NWA branding and graphics were replaced with WCW. WCW's association with the NWA was dissolved in '91, which resulted in NWA's championship belt becoming the WCW equivalent (or the "Big Gold Belt", as it came to be known).
* SpiritualSuccessor:
** The Outsiders invasion angle that lead to the nWo and the Heartland Wrestling Association, which both started in 1996, were successors to the failed invasion and talent exchange WCW had earlier started with [[Wrestling/{{SMW}} Smokey Mountain Wrestling]], which shut down in 1995.
** TNA, both the good (like its early focus on the X-Division / cruiserweights) and bad (kayfabe-breaking and reality TV smut). Bonus: Jarrett founded it to replace WCW in the first place. As of 2016, TNA has officially been in business longer than WCW, as has ROH. And both companies have been around almost twice as long as ECW. Crazy, huh?
* SquashMatch: The abundance of squash matches on WWF programming lead viewers to jump ship to watch WCW, which mostly showcased competitive matches. As an example of TropesAreTools, WCW did use squash matches to create its top draw, Goldberg.
* StatusQuoIsGod:
** This had always been present to some degree. The downfall of Jim Crockett Promotions was that there were no clean finishes, which ultimately fell on Dusty Rhodes' shoulders. Nobody wanted to job because of backstage politics and Rhodes found that screwjob finishes were the best way to keep everyone happy, but some fans felt robbed.
** As the WWF reinvented itself with a new darker and edgier image (lifted in part from ECW), WCW kept milking the nWo for all it was worth. The group was originally planned to dissolve after ''Starrcade '97'', where WCW mainstay Sting defeated Hogan for the world title. Instead, the group split into factions: nWo "Hollywood", led by Hogan, and nWo "Wolfpac", led by Kevin Nash, which feuded with each other throughout 1998. The group re-unified following the "Fingerpoke of Doom", before being split again and reshuffled into the Millionaires' Club and New Blood.
* TakeThat: How many times has that killed an entire company? WCW might well be the first when they revealed that Mick Foley would win the WWF Championship, which caused over half a million fans to switched over to ''Raw''.
* WorkedShoot:
** Hogan and Bischoff were negotiating the details of the heel turn as late as the afternoon of the show. The plan was kept secret from most people, although in the days before the show, most people in WCW strongly suspected it would be Hogan, but no one knew for sure. Scott Hall claims he didn't know until two hours before the match.
** According to the ''Monday Night Wars'' documentary, one night, Nash and Hall wrecked havoc with baseball bats and then lawn darted Rey Mysterio into a nearby trailer. Residents in Orlando watching the events unfold on TV called the police to report a gang war. When you see on-screen firetrucks and ambulances pull up at WCW, that was not scripted. That was real.
** Flyin' Brian Pillman "quit" the company in the one of the most bizarre shoots ever. He pretended to be crazy, jumped the divider and left, and the wrestlers had to fill time somehow. (The sight of Arn Anderson hurrying to the ring in a dress shirt, shorts and hiking boots was awkward.) Kevin Sullivan was in on it with Pillman, they were the only ones that knew. This was arguably the first worked shoot; it involved two brilliant people; and it got over huge, making Pillman the biggest free agent in wrestling and drawing attention to the company. Sullivan and Pillman would call each other and talk about people going up to each one of them and calling the other an asshole, and hoping they'd kick the other's ass. Jericho even said he caught them one time during a 'crazy' episode, and in the middle of it Pillman winked at him.
** Madusa took one look at the names attached to the new women's division and signed at once. She announced her arrival, dropped the WWF belt in the trash can, and never once held the women's title, which became a complete afterthought the second it was revived, and lasted only a few months anyway.
** Starting in the late 90's, management did not allow announcers to view the pre-taped segments. The idea was that it would make their commentary "more spontaneous". As a result, they had no idea how to sell the angles that were taking place. One of the more notorious examples of this was when the nWo beat up Ric Flair in a field somewhere. He hitchhiked to the arena in a turnip truck. When Flair got back to the arena, dirty and clutching an axe handle, the commentators, having been briefed on none of this, decided he must have fallen asleep drunk.
** When The Giant fell off a building at ''Halloween Havoc'' '95, they had a guest commentator who was only there because he knew about monster trucks. He thought a man had fallen to his death and the other announcers just let him believe it.
** At one point, Nash and Goldberg had a feud based around Goldberg [[NoFourthWall not wanting to follow the script and lose the match]]. There was also a "shoot interview" he did on ''Nitro,'' half in character, half not, where he talked about how uncomfortable he was playing a heel. In the middle of the match, Goldberg loses interest and just walks away. Russo comes out and yells at Goldberg to get back in, and Goldberg yells "FUCK YOU!" (Russo experimenting with the 'meta' premise had some moments, but overall came off awkward at best.)
** Bischoff was constantly working the wrestlers. For instance, [[http://www.rspwfaq.net/2014/03/rf-video-shoot-interview-with-sherri.html according]] to Wrestling/SherriMartel, everyone assumed that Nancy Sullivan's affair with Benoit was a work. Some of them even thought that ''WCW's bankruptcy'' was a work!
* WrestlingMonster:
** Vader was portrayed as an incredible monster heel in WCW; from ''Starrcade'' '92 (vs. Sting) to ''Starrcade'' '93 (vs. Flair), Vader did not take a clean loss. He also got big wins over Cactus Jack, Sting, Wrestling/RickySteamboat, and Davey Boy Smith.
** Raven, along with The Flock, was a hated heel and a popular face. He was an upper-midcard staple with the US Title for a long time, and also arguably the making of Goldberg. Raven also had a pretty fun, weird, and stupid run with Wrestling/PerrySaturn, Vampiro, and the ICP. But his "Raven's Rules" gimmick was by far the most memorable part of his WCW stint: Just stating ''any match I'm in is no DQ, no countout'' made him a real threat.
** Goldberg, who later became a face by default. They took a no-name green wrestler with no promo skills and turned him into an unbeatable colossus. He probably spoke no more than 10 words in his first year, and they made him a superstar.
** Bam-Bam, who had a history of being loyal to NJPW up to this point, was a different type of 'enforcer'. A straight-up brawler with head tattoos who made his debut by calling out Goldberg, and even got the drop on Raven once.
* YankTheDogsChain: They kept coming up with entirely new and inventive ways to screw Chris Benoit and Chris Jericho over.
[[/folder]]
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